The first hit’s free

By Mir
April 25, 2006

Well, the visit has flown by, and tomorrow morning I will repack the car–which will now be overflowing with approximately half a toy store’s worth of loot for the kids and one of every item from the girl’s department at Target (that’s what happens when Grandma offers to take Chickadee shopping for “a dress,” much to Chickadee’s delight)–and head back home.

I could tell you that this was always the plan, and that would be true. But let’s be clear: It’s supposed to SNOW here tomorrow. I love my parents and everything, but COME ON. It’s nearly May. That sort of weather is just against my religion. I need to get back to New England where we already have mosquitoes as big as golf balls by now.

We had a great time in spite of the fact that the weather was dreary and Monkey kept crashing full-tilt into various pieces of furniture (“STUPID TABLE!” he bellowed as he rubbed his wounded knee; “STUPID COUNTER!” after he smacked his head) and Chickadee had a stomach ache tonight. The kids were allowed to play with their Gameboys, which they ordinarily don’t get to have at my house, and also received tomagatchis from my mom.

I had thought, previously, that the Gameboys were sort of like crack. Rather than deal with attempting to regulate them, I banned them from the house. It just seemed easier that way. But this was before I saw the tomagatchis. Now I understand that the Gameboys were really more like a bit of weed, and the tomagatchis, hooboy, they’re full-fledged blow. The children have spent HOURS just… I don’t know… feeding little pixelated blobs and waiting for them to poop. Which, okay; fair enough to point out that that’s sort of like the early days of caring for an infant. Sure. But infants eventually become PEOPLE and tomagatchi blobs eventually become… slightly larger tomagatchi blobs. The entire thing confuses me.

On the other hand, I don’t expect to hear a lot of “are we there yet?”s on the way home tomorrow, either.

Also I must confess that addictive behavior rather runs in the family. Here I am, ragging on my kids and their tomagatchis, only because I’ve RUN OUT OF SUDOKUS. (No, I cannot do them on the web. I need to make notes. Shut up.) Only my stepmom seems to know how to tame her printer, and each night my dad and I have sat side by side working on our sudokus which she’s printed out for us. Tonight we both ran out and harangued her until she printed more. To her credit, although her facial expression clearly said, “You people need professional help,” she was quick to provide us each with a new batch of puzzles before either of us started to cry.

In thanks for her tolerance of our problem, my dad and I also like to have some late-night dessert on occasion and try to get her to join us. We start with “Want to have some?” and quickly move on to “All the cool kids are doing it!” and “You know you want to!” My father even progresses to “I have ONE BITE LEFT if you want to come over here RIGHT NOW, but after this all the yummy cake will be ALL GONE.”

We’re a family of dealers. And addicts. The shame. Oh, the shame!

The delicious, chocolate frostinged numerical shame….


  1. dad

    From now on every time I get stuck on a stupid sudoku I will expect you to come and bake a delicious chocolate frostinged cake.
    It hath the power to calm the savage beast.

  2. Mom

    So very warm and fuzzy and wonderful to see the lot of you and even get to touch, hug and kiss – but you can’t say I didn’t warn you about that. Snow? As some wise one recently said: pshaw! In tropical hereabouts it’s supposed to be near 60 tomorrow afternoon. So just don’t leave too early [when it’s supposed to snow].

  3. Sharkey

    Not to feed your addiction or anything, but this online Sudoku site lets you make notes. Just hold down the shift key and type the number you want to note, and it shows up in red.

  4. Carol

    I’m not above a little Gameboy action to save my sanity….

  5. Karen

    At, you can set it so that you can plug in more than one numeral per box if you need to until the thing falls together. (Just enabling, that’s all!)

  6. elswhere

    Oh, the tomagachis! I remember them. Or maybe they were neo-pets. Anyway when I was a librarian at a small library with an after-school enrichment/homework program, I always made the kids turn them off because of the beeping. And then they’d moan, “You killed it! It’s dead now!”

    And I’d feel GUILTY.

    Anyway. Sorry to hear about the addictions.

  7. ben


    You’re writing a blog entry about addiction, and now the comments are pouring in?

    Yeah, that seems about right…

  8. Marvo

    Sudoku puzzles give me headaches. Plus, I don’t know how to count. What numbers come after six?

  9. Ms Sisyphus

    Yeah, The Tamogotchis die if you don’t take care of them. If, say, you lose interest one day it makes its way between the couch cushions to rest in a beeping limbo for 3 days until it is remembered and a housewide search and destroy mission turns it up.

    They also mate. And have babies. Just so you’re prepared to have the convo on Tamogotchi Love.

  10. Lilymane

    At you can notate each square with numbers you think it MIGHT be just like you can on paper. In fact, it’s much neater than the way I write and I don’t end up with holes in the paper from erasing. Chalk me up as one more enabler! Also – travel safe today.

  11. Alexa

    You know, I have been resisting the Sudoku craze, because I have more time-sucking hobbies than I really need, but SO MANY people are enamoured of it I give up. I’m in. I must try this Sudoku you speak of.

  12. Jenn

    When I was in college, I worked at the campus library and one day, we found a Tamagotchi in the lost and found (this was when they were popular the first time, about 8 years ago). It was during the summer, things were slow and we spent the rest of the summer passing around this little beepy egg shaped thing.

    Unless, of course, my former boss is reading this, in which case we were totally up in the stacks working.

  13. Theresa

    In 6 months, they will grow weary of their tomagotchis. Do NOT take pity on the pixeled little blobs and attempt to feed them. Trust me. Gotta go take care of my 4 little blobs now…

  14. marymuses

    I don’t like doing sudoku on the web either. And I read the previous comments about how you can make “notes” on the web version, but it’s not the same as using my Hello Kitty pencil on paper. Also, I make notes outside the rows as well, and I don’t think web sudoku will let you do that.

    I recommend the Mensa sudoku book; it has over 500 puzzles, guaranteed to keep you busy for at least a few days.

  15. Vaguely Urban

    I determined that the quickest path back to (semi) sanity was to fully indulge my Sudoku lust until I O.D.’d. It took about a month of non-stop hard-core Sudoku action, but I was finally free. ish.

  16. Jenrigg

    You mean Tamagochis (or whatever they are called) are still around? I blush to think that I actually took my DD’s one to work when she was about 7… so that it didn’t die while she was at school (to quote your own self “shut up”!)

  17. Mary

    Tomagatchis sound like heaven. When the start making them for 3-year-olds, I’ll be first in line to get one.

  18. Shiz

    Soduku AND dessert? Awesome.

  19. Irony Queen

    Today I solved my first two Sudoku puzzles. Thank you all ever so much, I may never sleep again! (Nor will I be able to look at numbers in my checkbook without trying to find the missing number for that square…)

  20. Niihaus

    My mother recently handed over all my paperwork from school. It had all my State Assessment Skills Test results…math problems, not so much my thing apparently. Sudokus make me crazy, but my husband and son are total addicts.

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